Coalwood Camp 2016 - Passport in Time

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Current Projects > 2016
Michigan - Hiawatha NF
Closed! Workers' Experience in the Northern Forest: Archaeology at the Coalwood Lumber Camp

CoalwoodCa1900-1_(2) by USDA Forest Service
Coalwood logging camp and settlement around 1900

August 1-5, 2016

Must commit to entire session

Welcome to the beautiful Hiawatha National Forest! In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the National Historic Preservation Act, we will host the second year of a long-term research project investigating the lives of lumber workers in Michigan’s northern woods. Our specific focus has been on a series of cordwood lumber camps owned and operated by the Cleveland Cliffs Iron Company. However, this is the first time our efforts will be run as a Passport in Time (PIT) project and, this year, we invite applicants to join us as we explore the Coalwood Lumber Camp! Coalwood was in operation from 1900 to 1912, and employed and housed as many as 217 timbermen and their families, most of whom were of Finnish descent. Previous excavation and survey work at Coalwood concentrated on the camp office and manager’s house, the camp store, three workers’ houses, and a sauna. This summer, we plan to expand our study into the southeast quadrant, where we believe the boarding houses (shown in the picture above) were located. PIT volunteers will gain (or hone) experience in proper archaeological field methods and artifact identification, and will be given a rare glimpse into what life was like for these historic lumber workers. There are also many things the local area has to offer in the way of sight-seeing, fishing, hiking, boating, and much more during your hours “off the clock.” We hope you’ll join us in August as we explore the past in Michigan’s Northern Forest! However, we will only take applications until the project is filled, so apply today!

Number of openings: 10

Special skills: Volunteers must be physically capable of moderate, but sustained walking/hiking, bending, kneeling, sitting, lifting, etc.; previous archaeological survey, excavation, mapping, sketching, photography, historic artifact identification experience, and/or knowledge of area history helpful, but not required

Minimum age: 18 years old

Facilities: There are abundant public and private campgrounds in the local area; amenities vary, and fees may apply; Munising is a full-service community with hotels/motels, restaurants, and a wide range of other amenities; volunteers responsible for own lodging/personal camping equipment, meals, extra water, and daily transportation; crewmembers will gather at a designated meeting place on day one, and travel together to the site; thereafter, the crew will gather at the site each morning

Nearest towns: Munising, 4 miles; Marquette 43 miles

Applications due: Filled

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